Snail Pile!

Posted 2009.11.12 17.23 in Aquaria by Stephanie

I’ve never seen them do this before – all five of my snails gathered up together in the corner next to a filter. And it appears that there’s some, ah, romance going on.


From top to bottom, there’s Shelly (all by herself), then Speed Racer, though (s)he’s mostly hidden behind Little Buddy who might be getting amorous, or might just be hanging on because he’s annoying that way. Then there’s Big Blue, and she’s almost certainly being ‘romanced’ by the little golden Munchkin who’s sitting on Big Blue’s side.

And to my chagrin and annoyance, there are also two of those dang-blasted planorbid snails in there as well, one on the Munchkin’s operculum and one on Big Blue’s operculum. Grumble grumble nuts and curses.

Aquarium Update #3: Alpha Betta Base

Posted 2009.11.12 7.16 in Aquaria by Stephanie

My betta fish named Alpha still has a 5.5 gallon aquarium all to himself. Well, himself and a colony of Bythinia tenticulata snails (aka faucet snails).

At first I thought the faucet snails were baby apple snails, as they are very, very similar in form. However, the B. tenticulata do not have labial tenticals, and their adult size is somewhere between a pea and a bb. They are sort of along the same line as ‘pest snails’ but unlike the accursed planorbids, faucet snails do not (in my experience) take over the aquarium like a swarm of locusts.

So, being that they are like micro-sized apple snails, I decided to keep some of these little guys, and put them in the Alpha Betta Base. They have been doing fine there, and are onto their second generation in fact.

Of course, the real star of the tank is Alpha the Betta. Betta snobs wouldn’t much like Alpha, he’s just a run-of-the-mill standard pet-store betta. His colour goes from darkest blue at his nose to a dark ‘royal’ blue at his tail. There are some undertones of red here and there.

Oddly, he’s a bit of a coward. Now and then I’ll hold a mirror next to the tank, and his immediate reaction is not to flare aggressively – it’s to run and hide behind a plant. 🙄

Alpha Betta Base